Ealing - Our Lady Mother of the Church

Windsor Road, Ealing, London W5

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A substantial, mid-Victorian Gothic Revival ragstone church, built originally for Methodist use and acquired for use by the local Polish community in 1986. The design is conventional enough for its time, but shows how Nonconformists had come to embrace the Gothic style and use it to good effect. The interior is impressive and spacious, with a complex roof of some exuberance. The spire is a landmark feature in the local conservation area and a counterpoint to that at G.G. Scott’s Anglican church of Christ the Saviour, a quarter of a mile away.

This was originally the Ealing Broadway Methodist Church, the foundation stone of which was laid on 22 September 1868 (inscription). It became a Polish church in 1986. The tall spire is similar to that at John Tarring’s (now demolished) Congregational church of 1851-52 at Clapham Common. The large, adjacent hall was added in 1925.

The church is oriented towards the west; all directions given here are liturgical.

The list entry (below) dates from 1972 and describes the building as ‘Ealing Broadway Methodist Church (now closed)’; this needs to be updated to take account of the new use. It may be added that the style of the building is ‘Middle Pointed’ Gothic, to use the Victorian term for architecture of around 1300. Also the tower is situated at the west end of the aisle and its base doubles as a porch. There is no clerestory and the aisle roof continues on from that over the nave but at a less steep angle. The sanctuary is short.

The list entry does not describe the interior. This is an impressive space with a very broad nave and tall transepts. At the west end is a narthex arrangement with stairs leading to the deep west gallery. Then there are three bays to the nave, followed by the transepts and then a final bay in front of the sanctuary. The arcades are formed of quatrefoil piers with small hollows between the lobes: the capitals bell out to cruciform tops which carry both the arches to the roof and longitudinally across the arcades. The upper parts of the church, therefore, have an interesting abundance of timberwork. The nave roof is three-sided and has thin, flying arch-braces to the collar. In front of the sanctuary is a broad stone arch with foliage capitals.

There are no fittings of furnishings requiring mention other than the east window, possibly by Heaton, Butler & Bayne, with the figures of Christ as Salvator Mundi, and the Four Evangelists: below these are attractive small panels of fruit and flowers.

Diocese: Westminster

Architect: Charles Jones and John Tarring

Original Date: 1868

Conservation Area: Yes

Listed Grade: Grade II